The New York Times has joined a coalition of 200 newspapers led by The Boston Globe opposing the moniker of “fake news” used against them by Donald Trump and his supporters.
In a statement released by the paper’s editorial board, The Times called on journalists and citizens to not take the importance of a free press for granted and to stand up to attempts by Trump to label journalists an “enemy of the people.”
“Criticizing the news media — for underplaying or overplaying stories, for getting something wrong — is entirely right. News reporters and editors are human, and make mistakes. Correcting them is core to our job,” the statement read.
“But insisting that truths you don’t like are ‘fake news’ is dangerous to the lifeblood of democracy. And calling journalists the ‘enemy of the people’ is dangerous, period.”
The Boston Globe launched the free press coalition this past weekend, with newspapers ranging from national papers to local weeklies taking part. The Dallas Morning News, The Denver Post, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and the Chicago Sun-Times are among those also joining the effort.
Marjorie Pritchard, deputy manager for the Boston Globe, said she hopes the coalition will educate readers to realize that “an attack on the First Amendment is unacceptable.”
“We are a free and independent press,” she said. “It is one of the most sacred principles enshrined in the Constitution.”
Earlier this month, Trump launched another attack against the press during a rally for U.S. Rep. Lou Barletta in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, telling the crowd there that the reporters covering his administration “only make up stories.”